TBR News September 7, 2017

Sep 07 2017

The Voice of the White House

Washington, D.C., September 7, 2017: “Whenever there is a natural disaster, trust it, the loonies emerge from under their damp logs, waving their arms in the air and screeching the usual gibberish.

Here is a story from a British paper that illustrates this very well. And soon, we will learn that the mythical Planet X, with L. Ron Hubbard at the controls, will cause more hurricanes in the lower latitudes,:

‘HURRICANE IRMA: Christians claim Irma start of APOCALYPSE and HOUSTON NEXT

FLOOD ravaged Houston may be next to feel the force of a powerful hurricane, that could signal the start of the apocalypse, if three self-styled prophets are to be believed.

September 6, 2017

by Jon Austin

the Express

Christian doommongers in the US claim to have seen visions of Houston, Texas, burning after being pounded by terrible storms.

The religious conspiracy theorists claim their visions mean Houston could feel the force of Hurricane Irma and another as yet unknown storm. Storm Lydia is right behind Irma, weather forecasts show.

Weather experts have forecast Irma will reach the tip of Florida by the Gulf of Mexico, which is around 600 miles from Houston as the crow flies.

However, according to conspiracy theory website beforeitsnews.com, there have been pr

Self-styled seer Pamela Banda says in August 2016 she first published a blog talking about a vision she had of Houston in may that year.

She said it indicated that two floods and two storms would hit the city.

Ms Banda said that while praying she “instantly saw a vision”.

She wrote: “I suddenly found myself up in the air in the city of Houston.”

Four gas tanks were on fire and the flames spread to an apartment bock, which collapsed, she claimed.

She added: “Then out of the corner of my right eye I saw a wave of water that looked around five feet high from where I was up in the air.

“So it was not as tall as the buildings, but enough to cause severe damage.

“The water was destroying everything in sight.

“Cars were being flipped over and everything was catching on fire.

“When the winds came it moved me in the air and that was when I began to panic because until then I thought I was only seeing a vision.”

However, Ms Banda gave no hint of a date for when it would happen after her “vision.”

“Prophet” Sadhu Sundar Selvaraj, the founder of Jesus Ministries, had a 2015 prophecy of the destruction of Houston, according to beefiestnews.com.

He wrote then: “When we landed at Houston airport, we came out of the plane and we walked on the bridge.

“As soon as I stepped foot on Houston Airport, I heard the voice.

“I think this angel followed me. He said, ‘This city will be destroyed by a massive flood’.”

Again no date of when it would happen was given.

Brother Billy Nelson was the first to predict the events, according to James Baily of Z3news.com.

Mr Baily said: “Exactly eight years ago, on August 30 2009, Brother Billy Nelson had a prophetic dream in which he saw great destruction in Houston.”

Mr Nelson wrote in 2009 that while on a cruise ship he “looked out over the water and saw massive amounts of debris coming into the waterway.”

He said: “I saw pieces of rooftops, houses, and all manner of trash floating in the water.

“It was the leading edge of incredible amounts of fragments of what used to be homes and businesses.”

Mr Nelson claimed God warned him ‘when you see this it has begun’.

Mr Baily said: “What has begun? Billy understood it was a confirmation of many other prophetic warnings God had already given him regarding judgment coming to the United States.

“What Brother Billy saw in his dream is happening today as he is currently on a cruise ship near Houston, stranded with 20,000 other passengers.”

Mr Nelson claimed to have a second vision on September 15 2009.

He said at the time: “In the vision, I was observing from a high altitude.

“I saw the Houston, Galveston coastline below.

“A very weak unnamed storm was brewing just off shore.

“Then it suddenly intensified and became a very large black storm like no one had ever seen.

The storm moved inland in a large black mass and engulfed the city of Houston and surrounding area

afterwards the storm withdrew, it drug back a massive amount of debris as it returned to sea.”

Mr Baily said: “The year was marked out, so it was not revealed, but the month was revealed as September.

“Putting Billy’s vision together with what Pamela saw, a second storm will bring more flooding and strong winds to the Houston area and its’ destruction will be greater than the first because Pamela saw ‘everything catching on fire’ and Billy saw, ‘It drug back a massive amount of debris as it returned to sea.’

“Even though the first storm has already landed, we have not been shown how much time passes before the second one hits.

“Perhaps the area will be granted a reprieve.”

Fortunately for us many people have predicted the end of the world on many occasions and all have come and passed without incident.’”




Table of Contents

  • Hurricane Irma causes devastation in the Caribbean
  • Mother Nature’s wrath: Is climate change making mega-hurricanes the new normal
  • Why Hurricane Irma Could Hurt, a Lot: Much Lies in Harm’s Way
  • Sea level rise will double coastal flood risk worldwide
  • Plastic fibers pervasive in tap water worldwide, new study shows
  • The Bombast of Nikki Haley
  • North Korea: EU mulling sanctions, South Korea, Japan coordinating more sanctions
  • White Christians a minority in US, study finds
  • While Defeat of Isis Dominates Attention, al-Qaeda Gets Stronger
  • Never pick a fight with a tiger


Hurricane Irma causes devastation in the Caribbean

September 7, 2017

BBC News

Hurricane Irma has caused widespread destruction across the Caribbean, reducing buildings to rubble and leaving at least 10 people dead.

The small island of Barbuda is said to be “barely habitable”. Officials warn that St Martin is almost destroyed, and the death toll is likely to rise.

Irma is a category five hurricane, the highest possible level.

It is currently north of the Dominican Republic, heading towards Turks and Caicos.

The low-lying Turks and Caicos islands are said to be at risk of a storm surge, with the possibility of destructive waves up to 6m (20ft) higher than usual.

Meanwhile, the head of the US emergency agency has said that Hurricane Irma will have a “truly devastating” impact when it hits southern coastal areas of the United States.

“The majority of people along the coast have never experienced a major hurricane like this,” Federal Emergency Management Agency (Fema) chief Brock Long told CNN.

The most powerful Atlantic storm in a decade, Irma has sustained wind speeds of 285km/h (180mph).

What are the worst-hit areas?

Hurricane Irma first struck the dual-island nation of Antigua and Barbuda. At least one death, of a child, was reported on Barbuda, where Prime Minister Gaston Browne said about 95% of the buildings had suffered some damage.

“It’s absolute devastation,” he said after flying over the island, home to some 1,600 people. “The island is literally under water. In fact, I’m of the view that, as it stands now, Barbuda is barely habitable.”

He told the BBC that 50% of the Barbuda population were now homeless and that it would cost $100m (£80m) to rebuild the island.

However, Antigua, with a population of 80,000, escaped major damage, with no loss of life, he said earlier.

St Martin, an island that comprises the French territory of Saint-Martin and the Dutch section Sint-Maarten, suffered terrible damage.

Officials have confirmed at least eight deaths in Saint-Martin and Saint Barthélemy, popularly known as St Barts.

“It’s an enormous catastrophe – 95% of the island is destroyed,” top local official Daniel Gibbs said of Saint-Martin.

Sint-Maarten’s airport, the third largest in the Caribbean, has been seriously damaged.

The Dutch defence ministry said: “The picture is of many uprooted trees, houses without roofs and pleasure boats on land.”

The Dutch navy has sent two ships from nearby Aruba and Curacao to assist locals but they have had trouble docking, according to media in the Netherlands.

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said: “The island is not reachable at this point because of the huge damage to the airport and the harbour.”

French Interior Minister Gerard Collomb said efforts were under way to get supplies to Saint-Martin and Saint Barthélemy.

“There is massive destruction. We’ll concentrate our first efforts so that in the next hours people can get access to food and drinking water,” he told reporters.

Where else has been hit?

Puerto Rico appears to have been spared the worst, although many of the island’s three million residents were left without power amid heavy downpours and strong winds.

The BBC’s Paul Blake, who has arrived in the US territory’s capital San Juan, reports some damage but says it appears the worst fears of residents have not been realised.

British overseas territories Anguilla and the British Virgin Islands were also caught in the extreme weather.

At least one death has been reported on Anguilla, a local official confirmed.

One Anguilla resident told the BBC the island looked as if it had been struck by a nuclear bomb, with roofs torn off many of the main buildings, including the hospital.

UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said on Facebook that he had spoken with its chief minister.

“My thoughts are with all those affected and the UK is taking swift action to respond,” he said. “We have staff and a British naval ship ready to help those in need.”

Some residents complained that the UK response was inadequate.

UK Prime Minister Theresa May has arranged an emergency government meeting. She has spoken to French President Emmanuel Macron, pledging to work with him and the Dutch government to co-ordinate relief.

En route to the US

US President Donald Trump said he and his aides were monitoring Irma’s progress. “But it looks like it could be something that will be not good,” he told reporters at the White House. “Believe me, not good.”

Projections suggest it could hit the state of Florida on Sunday.

Officials started evacuations of tourists and residents of Florida Keys, a resort archipelago.

Flights to and from several airports in Florida were being suspended, while Orlando’s international airport said that commercial flights would stop from 17:00 local time on Saturday.

A state of emergency had been declared for Florida, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands, mobilising federal disaster relief efforts.

Are there more hurricanes to come?

Another storm, Jose, further out in the Atlantic behind Irma, swelled to category one hurricane strength and could be near major hurricane strength on Friday, according to the US National Hurricane Center.

Forecasters say Jose is expected to pass close to the Leeward Islands, a collective name for islands from Dominica to Puerto Rico. Its exact path is as yet unclear but winds are not expected to be as strong. However, it may hit areas already devastated by Irma.

Storm Katia, in the Gulf of Mexico, was also upgraded to hurricane status, and a warning was in effect for the coast of the Mexican state of Veracruz.

Seeing multiple storms developing in the same area of the Atlantic in close succession is not uncommon at this time of year. Rarer though is the strength of the hurricanes.

Hurricane Harvey made landfall in the US as a category four less than two weeks ago. Irma is expected to be at least category four when it arrives in the US.

There have never been two category four storms making landfall on the US mainland within the same season, since records began.


Mother Nature’s wrath: Is climate change making mega-hurricanes the new normal?

Two powerful hurricanes within two weeks, and sea surface temperatures in the Gulf of Mexico have been among the highest in the world this year – coincidence? Or is global warming fueling these massive storms?

September 7, 2017

by Brigitte Osterath


It’s hurricane season – and this one is a rough one.

Less than two weeks after Hurricane Harvey left a swath of deadly destruction in Louisiana and Texas, causing massive flooding in Houston, Hurricane Irma is ripping through the French Carribean.

Irma has already killed at least 10 people on various islands, hitting the dual-island nation of Antigua and Barbuda especially hard.

And already, another tropical storm has formed in the Atlantic behind Irma: Jose, which might hit Puerto Rico and other Caribbean islands on Friday and Saturday.

Meanwhile, Hurricane Katia in the Gulf of Mexico has started making its way toward the coast of Mexico, and is forecast to hit the state of Veracruz by early Saturday.

Experts have been warning that such disastrous storms will become more frequent in a warming world. Are Harvey and Irma a sign of what’s to come?

‘Active’ hurricane season

Tropical storms are categorized from 1 to 5 according to their intensity – including their wind speed, the amount of rain they bring, and the extent of damage they cause, with category 5 storms being the most powerful possible.

While Harvey at its peak was a category 4 hurricane, Irma already is a category 5 monster, with winds of 180 miles per hour (285 kilometers per hour) – one of the strongest Atlantic hurricanes ever recorded. Irma is reportedly so strong, it’s registering on earthquake detectors.

Jose and Katia are currently assessed as category 1.

While people in the US and the Caribbean were quite lucky the last years, “this year’s hurricane season is very active,” Andreas Friedrich at the German Weather Service in Frankfurt tells DW.

“It’s partly due to the El Niño event. After a strong El Niño year – which we had last year – more intense hurricanes tend to form over the Atlantic.”

El Niño is a weather phenomenon that is more or less normal.

But rising sea temperatures have indeed made things worse.

More fuel for hurricanes

“Currently, the Caribbean is seeing warmer sea surface temperatures – around 30 degree Celsius (86 Fahrenheit),” Friedrich says. “And that’s another reason for this strong hurricane season.”

The magic temperature for formation of hurricanes and other tropical storms is at least 26 degrees Celsius.

The warmer the water is, the more water vaporizes and gets sucked into the storm, fueling the storm and making it more intense.

“More energy in the atmosphere means more potential for extreme weather,” Friedrich says.

With rising sea temperatures, the probability that the water surfaces reaches 26 degrees increases, making tropical storms more likely to occur.

Intensity but not frequency

Although there is evidence tropical storms are becoming more intense, scientists are reluctant to say that they are becoming more frequent with ongoing global warming.

“To be able to say so, we would need data showing a verifiable increase of storms in the last 30 years,” meteorologist Friedrich says. “But that’s simply not the case.”

Instead, there is a lot of fluctuation – there are worse years and better years.

“Back in the 70s we also had periods with more and more intense hurricanes,” Friedrich points out. “There is simply no detectable trend that the frequency of hurricanes has risen.”

With tropical storms being quite rare, it is indeed difficult to find statistical proof for their increase over time, Mojib Latif of Geomar Helmholtz Center for Ocean Research Kiel tells DW.

Latif compares the effect that climate has on such extreme weather events to a loaded dice.

“You have to roll the dice very often to proof that the dice is loaded.”

But he points out that only because you cannot prove a fact yet doesn’t necessarily mean it is not true.

Record-breaking storms

Latif says there is a detectable trend, namely relating to how intense those tropical storms are.

“Strong tropical storms [of higher categories] appear to be becoming more frequent.”

This is true not only for hurricanes in the Caribbean, but also for cyclones and typhoons in other parts of the world.

In 2008, researchers at Florida State University in Tallahassee found that Atlantic tropical cyclones are getting stronger on average, with their wind speed rising significantly.

“Our results are qualitatively consistent with the hypothesis that as the seas warm, the ocean has more energy to convert to tropical cyclone wind,” they wrote in the journal “Nature.”

Latif agrees. “The destructiveness of tropical storms in general has increased – just look at Harvey, with its enormous amounts of rain. And now Irma is record-breaking – again – we’ve never seen such high wind speeds over such a big area

So is it climate change?

But blaming global warming for single events like Irma or Harvey is difficult, Latif points out.

“You can never say that the occurrence of any particular storm can be attributed to climate change – but we have to prepare ourselves that such storms will intensify.”

Climate models forecast that hurricanes will become more intense – and more frequent – in the future.

Terry Dinan of the United States Congressional Budget Office in Washington assessed the potential increase in wind and storm surge damage caused by hurricanes making landfall in the US between now and 2075- He found that “climate change and coastal development will cause hurricane damage to increase faster than the US economy is expected to grow.”

Moreover, the number of people facing substantial damage will increase more than eight-fold over the next 60 years, he wrote in the journal “Ecological Economics.”

“What we are now experiencing is a foretaste of what climate models let us expect for the future,” meteorologist Friedrich says.

So maybe it’s time to stop quibbling over models – and start preparing for future mega-storms.


Why Hurricane Irma Could Hurt, a Lot: Much Lies in Harm’s Way

September 7, 2017

by Brad Plumer

The New York Times

WASHINGTON — The last time a Category 5 hurricane ripped through Florida, it was so destructive that meteorologists retired its name forever. That storm, Hurricane Andrew, made landfall southwest of Miami in 1992, killing 65 people, destroying 63,000 homes and inflicting $26.5 billion in economic losses.

But if a similar-sized hurricane were to strike Florida today in the same spot, it would be far more catastrophic — causing up to $100 billion in damage, according to a recent analysis by Swiss Re, the reinsurance firm. That’s even after accounting for the fact that South Florida has strengthened its building codes since Andrew.

The reason is simple: Central and South Florida have grown at a breathtaking pace since 1990, adding more than 6 million people. Glittering high-rises and condominiums keep sprouting up along Miami Beach and other coastal areas. A lot more valuable property now sits in harm’s way.

With Hurricane Irma — currently a Category 5 storm and one of the strongest hurricanes ever recorded in the Atlantic — possibly set to pummel Florida this weekend, the state is confronting the fact that rapid development has made its coastline far more vulnerable to hurricane damage than it used to be.

Florida has exploded in the last 40 years,” said Megan Linkin, a natural hazards expert at Swiss Re. “If you look at images of Miami Beach from 1926” — when the Great Miami Hurricane, a Category 4 storm, devastated the city with a direct hit — “it’s almost unrecognizable today.”

Why Hurricanes Keep Getting Costlier

A similar dynamic is playing out across the United States, from Florida to Louisiana to Texas. In 2016, the Congressional Budget Office estimated that hurricanes currently cause about $28 billion, on average, in annual damage nationwide. But those costs are projected to rise 40 percent between now and 2075, after adjusting for inflation.

Nearly half of that projected increase, the C.B.O. said, is because global warming and sea-level rise are expected to make hurricanes and storm surges more severe, though the exact effects are still a source of debate among scientists.

But half of the expected rise in hurricane costs is the result of expected increases in coastal development. Today, according to the C.B.O., roughly 1.2 million Americans live in coastal areas at risk of “substantial damage” from hurricanes — defined as damage of at least 5 percent of average income. By 2075, that number is forecast to rise to 10 million.

Population growth can also increase hurricane risks by adding newcomers who are unfamiliar with big storms or by clogging roads during evacuations, experts said.

As of Wednesday, forecasters were still unsure where Irma might make landfall in Florida or how strong it will be when it does. But in almost any conceivable scenario, a hurricane today is likely to do more damage than a comparable storm in the past, if only because of increased development.

In 1960, Hurricane Donna raged through the Florida Keys as a Category 4 storm before turning northwest to hit Naples and Fort Myers, causing roughly $7.4 billion in damage in today’s dollars. According to a model developed by Roger A. Pielke, Jr., and Christopher Landsea, a similar storm today would cause $46 billion in damage, after accounting for population growth, and increased property values.

Swiss Re estimates that a storm like the Great Miami Hurricane of 1926 would inflict more than $200 billion in damage today if it struck Miami and Miami Beach directly — exceeding the $160 billion in damage caused by Hurricane Katrina in 2005, adjusted for inflation. (Officials are still calculating the cost of Hurricane Harvey to Texas, but estimates today range as high as $180 billion.)

Nearly $80 billion of those potential losses in Florida would not be covered by insurance, the Swiss Re report said, which would “undoubtedly” affect South Florida’s economic growth “over several years, hindering its capability to recover.”

Those stark numbers, Mr. Pielke said, suggest that even before considering the effects of climate change, “more $100 billion disasters are probably in our future — and we need to think harder about how to prepare for them.”

Bracing for Future Storms

In response, some cities like Miami have been taking precautions against future storms — though so far that has not included a slowdown in development.

In 1994, in the wake of Andrew, South Florida enacted some of the strictest building codes in the country. New houses must now feature impact-resistant windows or shutters as well as stronger clips and straps to secure their roofs, to better withstand major hurricanes, which inflict much of their damage through powerful winds that can send debris flying dangerously. Local zoning rules also require high-rise developers in key areas to build to withstand high winds.

“There’s no question that these building codes have improved our hurricane risk,” said Shahid Hamid, director of the Laboratory for Insurance, Financial and Economic Research at Florida International University, which has built a wind machine that can simulate hurricane-force winds to test new building designs.

But, Dr. Hamid cautioned, stricter codes don’t offer perfect protection. Roughly 70 percent of the region’s buildings were built before 1994, and many homes have not been retrofitted (though homeowners can get a substantial cut in their insurance premiums if they do so). And, he said, a direct hit from a Category 5 hurricane, with sustained wind speeds greater than 157 miles per hour, can cause heavy damage to even the best-constructed homes.

What’s more, even high-rises built to withstand fierce winds can still be vulnerable to water damage from heavy rains that can seep in through roofs, as investigators discovered after Hurricane Wilma clobbered the region in 2005.

There is also flooding and storm surge to consider. Hurricane Andrew pushed relatively little water inland in 1992 and did most of its damage through ferocious winds that flipped over cars and pulverized homes. But sea levels along Miami’s coasts have risen 3.3 inches since then, and the city is already seeing an increase in “sunny-day flooding” during high tides. With sea levels higher, a hurricane that struck in a vulnerable place could conceivably produce far greater flooding than Andrew did.

“Every hurricane is different,” said Jean-Pierre Bardet, dean of the college of engineering at the University of Miami. “I’d expect that if we had a direct hit, we’d see damages that we were not expecting.”

While stricter building requirements have made the cost of development somewhat more expensive, they have hardly put a brake on South Florida’s frenetic growth, as millions of people move for the sunny weather and gorgeous beaches. Miami-Dade County’s population has grown 35 percent since Hurricane Andrew, and developers still have ample incentive to build along the coastline.

In Florida, which has no state income tax, property taxes make up 36 percent of state and local revenues, and few cities have opted to take drastic measures to limit development along the hugely desirable coasts.

“It’s a struggle that every community is facing in South Florida,” Mr. Bardet said. “There is a constant battle between our ability to prepare for hurricanes and the pressure for urban expansion. It’s a great place to live. But it does come with some risk.”


Sea level rise will double coastal flood risk worldwide

Small but unstoppable increases will double frequency of extreme water levels with dire consequences, say scientists

May 18, 2917

by Damian Carrington ,Environment editor

The Guardian

Small but inevitable rises in sea level will double the frequency of severe coastal flooding in most of the world with dire consequences for major cities that sit on coastlines, according to scientists.

The research takes in to account the large waves and storm surges that can tip gradually rising sea levels over the edge of coastal defences. Lower latitudes will be first affected, in a great swath through the tropics from Africa to South America and throughout south-east Asia, with Europe’s Atlantic coast and the west coast of the US not far behind.

The most vulnerable places, including large cities in Brazil and Ivory Coast, and small Pacific islands, are expected to experience the doubling within a decade.

“It is pretty much inevitable that we are going to see increased frequency of extreme water levels – there is no way around this,” said Sean Vitousek, at the University of Illinois at Chicago, who led the research.

Climate change is causing sea levels to rise at about 4mm per year, as ice caps melt and the oceans warm and expand. This will continue for many years due to the carbon dioxide emitted into the atmosphere.

The steady rise in sea level is unlikely to cause flooding directly as coastline developments are designed to withstand the larger ebb and flow of the tides. But the rising level gives a higher starting point for the storm surges and big waves that can overwhelm coastal defences.

The research, published in the Scientific Reports journal, is the first to analyse these factors, particularly waves, on a global scale. It found that the most at-risk areas were in the low latitudes, In those locations, just 2.5cm of sea level rise leads to extreme water levels being seen twice as often, while a 5-10cm increase means coastal floods are twice as likely across all the tropics. A rise of 20cm leaves almost every coast with twice the risk.where tidal ranges are smaller meaning sea level rise is proportionally more significant.

Projections of sea level rise vary, with the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change estimating in 2013 an increase between 30cm and 100cm by 2100. But more recent research has suggested the great ice caps are more vulnerable than expected in a warming world and that oceans levels could rise more rapidly to reach 200-300cm by the end of the century.

The rise of 5-10cm, likely to occur within a couple of decades, would mean major cities including San Francisco in the US, Mumbai in India, Ho Chi Minh in Vietnam and Abidjan in Ivory Coast facing a doubled risk of coastal floods. “The maps of increased flooding potential suggest a dire future,” write the scientists.

“This study shows how even small changes in mean sea level can significantly increase the frequencies with which critical thresholds are exceeded,” said Thomas Wahl, professor of coastal risks at the University of Central Florida, who was not part of the research team.

“For coastal communities that means they need to adapt in order to prevent flood events from happening much more often,” Wahl said. “In the end, however, it still needs more localised studies in order for coastal managers to make important decisions on the ground.”

Previous research estimated the damages from coastal flooding could soar to $1tn a year by 2050.

Vitousek said: “We are going to have to [cut carbon dioxide emissions] and engineer the coastlines to stop a lot of these events from happening. We want Greenland and Antarctica to remain as ice for as long as possible.

“One metre of sea level rise is going to be a game-changer for the coastal zone. The next time you are at the beach or down by the water, think about what that area would be like in some of these sea level rise scenarios, half a metre or metre. You’ll see it’s a pretty scary proposition.”



Plastic fibers pervasive in tap water worldwide, new study shows

Microplastics aren’t just fouling the world’s oceans – invisible plastic fibers are polluting drinking water tapped by millions of people. Where do these fibers come from, and how bad are they for human health?

September 7, 2017

by Chris Tyree, Dan Morrison (Washington)


Microscopic plastic fibers are pouring out of faucets from New York to New Delhi, according to new research by Orb Media, a nonprofit digital newsroom based in Washington.

“It’s bad; one hears so many things about cancer,” Mercedes Noroña, 61, said after learning that a water sample from her home near Quito, Ecuador, contains plastic fibers.

“Maybe I’m exaggerating – but I’m afraid of the things that come in the water.”

A wave of recent research has shown how microplastic pollution fouls our oceans, freshwater, soil and air. This study is the first to reveal plastic in the tap water that billions depend on worldwide.

A plastic ‘noose’

The new findings are a wake-up call, said Muhammad Yunus, the Nobel Peace Prize laureate for 2006. “This should knock us into our senses,” he said. “We see the noose is getting tighter around our neck.”

For the study, more than 150 tap water samples were collected in cities on five continents. On average, 83 percent had plastic.

If synthetic fibers are in tap water, they’re probably also in foods like bread and baby formula.

It’s unclear how plastic fibers get into tap water – or what the health risks might be. Experts suspect they come from synthetic clothes, or carpets and upholstery.

How dangerous is it?

When consumed, plastic fibers may ferry toxins from the environment into the human body, experts fear.

Researcher Richard Thompson of Plymouth University said that in animal studies, “it became clear very early on that the plastic would release those chemicals – and that actually, the conditions in the gut would facilitate really quite rapid release.”

There is enough data on how plastic affects wildlife to be concerned, said Sherri Mason, a microplastics research pioneer who supervised Orb’s study.

“If it’s impacting them,” Mason said, “then how do we think that it’s not going to somehow impact us?”

For now, no one knows, said Lincoln Fok, an environmental scientist at Education University of Hong Kong. “The research [around microplastics] on human health is in its infancy,” he said.

A plastic world

Plastic fibers are in the tap water of countries rich and poor.

The number of fibers found in a sample from a washroom sink at the Trump Grill in New York was equal to that found in samples from Jakarta. (The Trump Organization did not respond to calls and emails seeking comment.)

Microscopic fibers were also found in bottled water, and in homes served by reverse-osmosis filters.

The United States doesn’t have a safety standard for plastic in tap water. In the European Union’s regulatory framework, tap water is required to be free of contaminants.

Yet the plastic fibers are omnipresent. In samples from the US and Beirut, 94 percent contained microscopic plastic fibers. Other sampled locations were New Delhi (82 percent), Kampala (81 percent), Jakarta (76 percent), Quito (75 percent) and Europe (72 percent).

Water engineer Hussam Hawwa collected the study’s Beirut samples. “This research only scratches the surface,” he said.

“But it seems to be a very itchy one,” he added.

Disbelief at ubiquity

The notion of plastic in drinking water inspires confusion and denial.

A spokeswoman for the Los Angeles water department stated, “Our ongoing test results show no elevated levels of plastic and/or their breakdown constituents.”

Still, two out of three Los Angeles samples – including water from a public drinking fountain – contained plastic fibers.

James Nsereko, a fisherman on Lake Victoria in Uganda, also dismissed the idea. “We have never found anything like that,” he said. But even a sample from Nsereko’s village tap had four fibers.

In Washington, a 500-milliliter (17-fluid-ounce) tap water sample from the US Capitol building had 16 fibers, as did one from the Environmental Protection Agency building. City officials in New York and Washington said their water meets legal standards.

Environmental mystery

There’s one confirmed source of plastic fiber pollution – and you’re probably wearing it. Synthetic garments emit up to 700,000 fibers per washload, researchers found. Much of that evades treatment and is discharged into public waterways.

Mason said fibers in treated wastewater are probably later collected and piped into homes in other communities. “We’re all downstream from someone.”

Plastic fibers may even be raining down from the air into our water supplies. A 2015 study estimated that 3 to 10 tons of plastic fibers fall each year onto the rooftops and streets of Paris.

Johnny Gasperi, of the University in Paris-Est Créteil, said: “What we observed in Paris tends to demonstrate that a huge amount of fibers are present in atmospheric fallout.”

New challenge

Wherever they come from, plastic fibers in tap water are a new and troubling riddle for government, science and industry to solve, Mason concluded.

“People were always like, ‘Is this in our drinking water?'” she recalled.

“I didn’t really think that it was.”



From the FAS Project on Government Secrecy

Volume 2017, Issue No. 64

September 7, 2017


Dealing with the debris left by a major disaster such as Hurricane Harvey is a challenge that requires skilled management to overcome, a new report from the Cong

“In the aftermath of a major disaster, a potential threat to safety and obstacle to recovery is the presence of significant amounts of disaster debris.”

“Improperly managing debris can have detrimental long-term repercussions. During or after a disaster, some debris will likely become mixed with hazardous constituents. For example, under flooding conditions, household hazardous waste or sewage may contaminate otherwise benign personal property or building materials, such as drywall or carpeting. Improper disposal of contaminated debris may lead to future environmental, health, or safety problems, such as groundwater contamination.”

The CRS report provides an overview of the legal and regulatory frameworks for addressing disposal of post-disaster debris. See Disaster Debris Management: Requirements, Challenges, and Federal Agency Roles, September 6, 2017.

Other notable new and updated reports from the Congressional Research Service include the following.

Floodplain Management and Flood Resilience: Current Policy and Considerations for Congress, CRS Insight, September 6, 2017

Issues in Autonomous Vehicle Deployment, September 1, 2017

Retirement Benefits for Federal Law Enforcement Personnel, updated September 5, 2017

Qatar: Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy, updated September 1, 2017

Paraguay: In Brief, August 31, 2017

New Financial Sanctions on Venezuela: Key Issues, CRS Insight, September 1, 2017

Since 2002, the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense system has reportedly achieved 36 successful missile intercepts out of 44 attempts. Lately, Japan has indicated that it will purchase and deploy an Aegis Ashore system to bolster its own defense against North Korean missiles. See Navy Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) Program: Background and Issues for Congress, updated September 1, 2017.


The Bombast of Nikki Haley

She’s a lightweight, and a warmongering globalist

September 7, 2017

by Justin Raimondo


How Nikki Haley got her job as UN ambassador, and a major foreign policy spokesperson for the Trump administration, is a mystery, at least to me. Her vicious personal attacks on Trump when he was a candidate should’ve ruled her out from the get-go. Where oh where is Trump’s vaunted vindictiveness and alleged “narcissism” when we need it? Whereas Obama’s appointments were characterized as a “team of rivals,” Trump’s may rightly be considered a team of enemies.

As Governor of South Carolina, and a member of that state’s House of Representatives, Haley’s foreign policy experience is absolutely nil. Nor does her degree in accounting from Clemson University inspire confidence. Her record thus far has consisted of giving voice to the neoconservative tendency in the GOP – the very people Trump defeated in the GOP primaries. The conventional Republican foreign policy clichés we’ve heard for years pour forth from her mouth like vomit from a drunk. Her recent speech before the American Enterprise Institute on the nuclear deal with Iran is a perfect case in point.

Haley acknowledges that Iran is complying with the terms of the deal, but that, we’re told, is a mere “technical” detail. Compliance is irrelevant, she says:

“They think, ‘Well, as long as Iran is meeting the limits on enriched uranium and centrifuges, then it’s complying with the deal.’ That’s not true. This is a jigsaw puzzle.”

What exactly does this mean? According to Haley, the Iran deal consists of more than just the terms laid out in the agreement, known as the JCPOA: it’s also about a UN resolution calling on Iran to stop testing missiles and the legislation passed by Congress overseeing enforcement. Yet these are separate issues: the UN resolution she refers to endorsed the deal, and merely requested Iran to stop testing missiles. As for the Corker-Cardin legislation, it’s hard to imagine how Iran is answerable to the US Congress: this is pure fantasy on Haley’s part.

Speaking of pure fantasy, early on in her peroration our UN Ambassadress reveals herself as a rank amateur by calling into question the very legitimacy of the Iranian regime:

“Judging any international agreement begins and ends with the nature of the government that signed it. Does it respect international law? Can it be trusted to abide by its commitments? Is the agreement strong enough to withstand the regime’s attempts to cheat? Given these answers, is the agreement in the national interests of the United States?

“The Islamic Republic of Iran was born in an act of international lawbreaking. On November 4, 1979, a group of Islamic revolutionary students overran the U.S. Embassy in Tehran. In violation of international law, they held 52 American Marines and diplomats hostage for 444 days.

“For the 38 years since, the Iranian regime has existed outside the community of law-abiding nations. Henry Kissinger famously said that Iran can’t decide whether it is a nation or a cause.

“Since 1979, the regime has behaved like a cause – the cause of spreading revolutionary Shiite Islam by force. Its main enemy and rallying point has been and continues to be what it calls the Great Satan . . . the United States of America.”

And so, according to Ms. Haley, the legitimate ruler of Iran is the pretender to the Peacock Throne. Ah, but the question is which one is the “rightful” ruler? (maybe it’s one of these guys.)

Why should anyone take her seriously at this point? However, just for the fun of it, let us take on the core of her argument: the idea that “judging any international agreement begins and ends with the nature of the government that signed it.”

By this standard, any agreement reached with a non-democratic country – say, Saudi Arabia, or China – is invalid, inherently illegitimate, and bound to be broken. Indeed, how many countries in the world live up to Ms. Haley’s exacting standards? By her lights, we shouldn’t even be in the United Nations!

During World War I, we loaned Britain substantial amounts on the condition that they would pay back their debts with interest. Yet they defaulted. Was this due to the “nature” of the British government?

Nations sign and abide by – or fail to keep — agreements in pursuit of their perceived interests: it has nothing to do with their “nature,” i.e. with their domestic political arrangements. That Haley fails to understand this basic principle of international diplomacy underscores her unfitness for the job of UN ambassador.

Another Haley howler is her contention that “For the 38 years since [the taking of the US embassy in Tehran] the Iranian regime has existed outside the community of law-abiding nations.” This is news to the ninety-nine countries that maintain embassies in Tehran, the Iranian capital, including Britain, France, Spain, Germany, and most of the rest of our NATO allies. Our allies in the East – Japan, South Korea – also maintain full diplomatic relations with the Iranian government. Only Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and the US maintain “interest sections” via the Swiss diplomatic corps (Canada has contact with Tehran via the Italians).

So much for Iran being “outside the community of law-abiding nations”! Indeed, the reality is quite the opposite: alongside the Egyptian dictatorship and the Saudi despotism, the US and Canada are alone in ostracizing Tehran.

Which brings us to an important point: although there is much speculation that Haley’s speech is a prelude to the Trump administration pulling out of the Iran deal, the reality is that this is highly unlikely. Haley herself hints at this when she avers that “the deal was constructed in a way that makes leaving it less attractive.” Well, yes, leaving the deal would give Iran the green light to move ahead with a nuclear weapons program – endangering the entire region, provoking an arms race, and raising the possibility of yet another Middle Eastern war. So here she acknowledges, albeit indirectly, the benefits of the deal.

And there’s another point to be made: the US was not alone in shaping and ultimately signing on to the Iran deal. The other signatories are Britain, Russia, France, China, and Germany. If the Trump administration pulls out, the others will ignore the US sanctions on Tehran, a state of affairs that will merely underscore Washington’s impotence.

Haley’s amalgam of innuendo – Iran, she avers, is secretly violating the deal, although she provides us with no evidence – historical revisionism, and outright absurdity is not aimed at Iran, or the international community. Like most foreign policy pronouncements of this – or any other – administration, it’s meant for domestic consumption. Aside from projecting “strength,” and “toughness,” it’s a sop to the powerful Israel lobby, which has been smarting from its failure to scotch the deal, as well as to those neoconservatives in the GOP who hate Trump and will continue hating him no matter what he does or doesn’t do about Iran.

During the 2016 presidential campaign, Trump said he wouldn’t pull out of the Iran deal but would instead strenuously “police” it. This may well be one of his campaign promises that the President will actually keep. What’s likely to happen is that Trump will throw this in the lap of Congress – as he’s doing with the DACA issue – in order to avoid taking a position one way or the other. As with most of what comes out of this administration, especially when it comes to foreign policy, the Haley speech is simply bombast. Or, as Shakespeare characterized life itself, it’s “a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.”


North Korea: EU mulling sanctions, South Korea, Japan coordinating more sanctions

South Korea and Japan have presented a united front against North Korea, agreeing to coordinate their response on the hydrogen bomb test. While the EU is mulling new sanctions, Russia has called for talks.

September 7, 2017


European foreign and defense officials will on Thursday discuss imposing the EU’s own sanctions on North Korea, after the rogue state claimed to have tested a hydrogen bomb — its largest nuclear weapons test yet — over the weekend.

“Today we are facing a different level of threat that is clearly a threat to global peace and security,” European Foreign Policy Chief Federica Mogherini told reporters ahead of a meeting of ministers in the Estonian capital of Tallinn. “I will propose to ministers today to strengthen our economic pressure on North Korea.”

Mogherini said the bloc should align itself with the latest UN Security Council resolution, but also impose its own series of sanctions against Pyongyang, which wouldn’t require the backing of China and Russia.While she refused to go into details, a US-drafted resolution for further sanctions includes freezing North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s assets and imposing an oil embargo. The draft, seen by the DPA news agency, also calls for a ban on North Korean textile exports and the employment of the North Korean workers abroad. The proposal has reportedly been submitted to other Security Council members.

South Korea, Japan to coordinate new sanctions

At the same time, in the far-eastern Russian port city of Vladivostok, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and South Korean President Moon Jae-in agreed to closely coordinate new, tougher sanctions against Pyongyang.

After holding talks on the sidelines of the Eastern Economic Forum, the two leaders said they would together push the Security Council to include “the most powerful sanctions so far, such as cutting off oil supplies,” according to South Korea’s Yonhap news agency.

Addressing the audience in Vladivostok, Abe called on the international community “to unite in applying the greatest possible pressure on North Korea.”

The Japanese Prime Minister added: “We must make North Korea immediately and fully comply with all relevant UN Security Council resolutions and abandon all its nuclear and ballistic missile programs in a complete, verifiable and irreversible manner.”

However, Russian President Vladimir Putin, who is hosting the forum, has rejected demands for further sanctions, rebuffing Abe’s assertion that sanctions will provide a solution to the crisis. Rather, offering an end to sanctions would be a better incentive for the North to end its weapons programs, he said.

“Without political and diplomatic tools, it is impossible to make headway in the current situation; to be more precise, it is impossible at all,” Putin said.

The Russian president acknowleged that Pyongyang’s nuclear program was a flagrant violation of UN resolutions, but added that the Kim regime sees its only means of self-defense.

“It’s impossible to scare them,” Putin said, adding that Pyongyang would have to be convinced that it wouldn’t be attacked once it gives up its weapons.

China is also reported to be reluctant to cut off key supplies to North Korea, fearing that it could trigger instability and an exodus of refugees on its border.

China opposes US missile launchers on its doorstep

China voiced its displeasure over plans to install US anti-ballistic missile defense systems, known as Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) in Seongju, about 300 kilometers south of Seoul.

The US has ratcheted up its military presence in the region in the wake of North Korea’s ballistic missile and nuclear tests, as well as the increasingly aggressive rhetoric between Kim and US President Donald Trump.

Beijing’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said on Wednesday that the deployment of a THAAD system in Korea “would not solve security concerns” and would “seriously undermine the strategic balance of the region.”

In Seongju, dozens of people were injured Wednesday after demonstrators clashed with authorities. Locals were protesting the deployment of THAAD launchers, arguing the US anti-missile defenses will turn the town into a primary target in the case of a North Korean strike.



White Christians a minority in US, study finds

September 7, 2017


In news sure to strike fear into the hearts of white supremacists, less than half the population in the US are white Christians – and evangelical Protestants are on the decline. However, 69 percent of the population is Christian, and 72 percent are white.

In 1976, eight in 10 Americans were white Christians, while today 43 percent are both white and Christian.

More than 101, 000 Americans were polled by the Public Religion Research Institute, a research organization which focuses on religious tradition and values, for its ‘America’s Changing Religious Identity,’ report.

Its findings are based on figures from its American Values Atlas survey, based on interviews with Americans across the country in 2016.


The study shows that evangelical Protestants have decreased from 23 percent in 2006 to 17 percent in 2016.

“This report provides solid evidence of a new, second wave of white Christian decline that is occurring among white evangelical Protestants just over the last decade in the U.S.,” Robert P. Jones, PRRI CEO and author of The End of White Christian America said.

“Prior to 2008, white evangelical Protestants seemed to be exempt from the waves of demographic change and disaffiliation that were eroding the membership bases of white mainline Protestants and white Catholics. We now see that these waves simply crested later for white evangelical Protestants.”

Close to two-thirds of over 65s surveyed are white Christians, while about a quarter of millennials are. The data reveals Christians in the US have an older median age, with 60 percent over 50, suggesting its numbers may continue to decline.

Younger Americans are more likely to identify as non-religious, with a third of 18-29-year-olds not belonging to a religion. Almost a quarter of all Americans, meanwhile, don’t identify with any religion.


The study shows the US still has a majority Christian population of 69 percent. Out of those who identify as having a religion, about 44 percent of those are white.

The report found Muslims, Buddhists and Hindus make up three percent of those surveyed, each having one percent. Orthodox Christians make up one percent, and are 81 percent white. Jews account for two percent of those surveyed.

Then there’s the 24 percent who don’t affiliate with a religion, plus the 3 percent that said they didn’t know or refused to answer.


The US has long had both a Christian and a white majority. According to 2010 census data (the last census conducted in the US), 72 percent of Americans are white, 12 percent are black, four percent are Asian, six are ‘some other race,’ and just over one percent are Native American, Hawaiian and Pacific Islanders. Thirteen percent are Hispanic and Latino, which is deemed an ethnicity rather than a race.


The US’s increasingly diverse population hasn’t translated to one of its major political parties, with almost three quarters of Republicans identifying as white Christians, and a third of those are evangelical.

As for Democrats, 29 percent are white Christians.


While Defeat of Isis Dominates Attention, al-Qaeda Gets Stronger

September 6, 2017

Patrick Cockburn

The Unz Review

Al-Qaeda is creating its most powerful stronghold ever in north-west Syria at a time when world attention is almost entirely focused on the impending defeat of Isis in the east of the country. It has established full control of Idlib province and of a vital Syrian-Turkish border crossing since July. “Idlib Province is the largest al-Qaeda safe haven since 9/11,” says Brett McGurk, the senior US envoy to the international coalition fighting Isis.

The al-Qaeda-linked movement, Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS), which used to be called Jabhat al-Nusra, has long been the most powerful rebel group in western Syria. After the capture of east Aleppo by the Syrian army last December, it moved to eliminate its rivals in Idlib, including its powerful former Turkish-backed ally Ahrar al-Sham. HTS is estimated to have 30,000 experienced fighters whose numbers will grow as it integrates brigades from other defeated rebel groups and recruits young men from the camps for Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) who have sought refuge in Idlib from President Bashar al-Assad’s forces.

Al-Qaeda is growing in strength in and around Idlib province just as Isis is suffering defeat after defeat in eastern Syria and Iraq. Its latest setback was its failure on Tuesday to stop the Syrian army linking up with its enclave at Deir Ezzor, where Isis has been besieging the government held part of the city for three years. Divided by the Euphrates, the city is the largest in eastern Syria and its complete recapture opens the way to the al-Omar oilfields that once provided half of Syria’s crude production.

The end of the siege, supposing encircling Isis forces are permanently driven back, frees up a Syrian army garrison of 5,000 to 10,000 soldiers as well as the 93,000 civilians trapped in the government-held zone who had been supplied with food by airdrops. Deir Ezzor is only the latest Isis urban centre to be lost on the Syrian portion of the Euphrates valley which was the heartland of its territories in Syria. Isis is everywhere on the retreat. Upriver from Deir Ezzor at Raqqa, the American-backed and Kurdish-run Syrian Democratic Forces are fighting their way into the city and has captured its old city quarter in the last few days.

Despite its proven fighting prowess, Isis is collapsing under the impact of ground attacks launched by different parties on multiple fronts in Iraq and Syria. What tips the balance against it in all cases is the massive firepower of the Russian and US air forces in support of ground assaults. Isis’s defeat in eastern Syria will accelerate as local tribes, previously won over or intimidated by Isis, join the winning side. The US and the Syrian Kurds may not like the return of Syrian government authority in eastern Syria, south of Raqqa, but they do not look as if they are prepared to fight hard to stop it. President Trump’s priority is to eradicate Isis and al-Qaeda, regardless of who rules Syria in future.

Bad news for Isis is good news for HTS and al-Qaeda. Its defeat preoccupies its myriad enemies and largely monopolises their military efforts. Short of combat troops, the Syrian army is only really capable of making a maximum effort on one front at a time. The Syrian Kurds have an interest in fighting Isis but not necessarily defeating it so decisively that the US would no longer need a Kurdish alliance and could return to the embrace of its old Nato ally Turkey.

HTS stands to benefit politically and militarily from the decline of Isis, the original creator and mentor of Jabhat al-Nusra, as the earliest of al-Qaeda’s incarnations in Syria was known. Under the name of al-Nusra, the Syrian branch of the movement split off in 2013 and the two sides fought a bloody inter-jihadi civil war. If Isis is destroyed or rendered a marginal force, Sunni Arab jihadis refusing to surrender to Mr Assad’s army and intelligence service will have no alternative but to join HTS. Moreover, Sunni Arabs in eastern Syria may soon be looking for any effective vehicle for resistance, if Syrian government armed forces behave with their traditional mix of brutality and corruption.

HTS will expect the many states now attacking Isis, and battering to pieces its three-year-old caliphate, to turn on them next. But they will hope to delay the confrontation for as long as possible while they strengthen their movement. Ideologically similar but politically more astute than Isis, they will seek to avoid provoking a final territorial battle which they are bound to lose. Some Syrian specialists warn against waiting too long. “The international community must seek urgently to counter-attack HTS, which grows stronger by the day, without waiting for the complete destruction of the Islamic State,” writes Fabrice Balanche in a study published by the Washington Institute for Near East Studies called Preventing a Jihadist Factory in Idlib. He says that HTS wants to dominate the whole Syrian rebellion and is close to succeeding.

The open dominance of an extreme Islamic jihadi movement like HTS creates a problem for foreign powers, notably the US, UK, France, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar, previous funders and suppliers of the Syrian rebels. HTS, whose attempt to distinguish itself from al-Qaeda has convinced few, is listed in many countries as a terrorist organisation, unlike its former ally, the Ahrar al-Sham. It will be difficult for foreign powers to do business with it, though the armed opposition to Mr Assad has long been dominated by extreme Islamist jihadi groups. The difference is that today there are no longer any nominally independent groups through which anti-Assad states and private donors can channel arms, money and aid while still pretending that they were not supporting terrorism.

Isis declared war against the whole world in 2014 and inevitably paid the price of creating a multitude of enemies who are now crushing it in Syria and Iraq. Many of the members of this de facto alliance always disliked each other almost as much as they hated Isis. It was only fear of the latter that forced them to cooperate, or at least not fight each other. It may not be possible to recreate the same unity of purpose against al-Qaeda.


Never pick a fight with a tiger

September 7, 2017

by Harry von Johnston, PhD


In July of 1940, at the Democratic convention held in Chicago, Joseph Kennedy Jr. was a delegate pledged to James Farley. During the course of the convention, Roosevelt’s men wished the nomination to be unanimous but young Kennedy refused to change his vote in spite of tremendous pressure put on him and his father by the Roosevelt camp.

The elder Kennedy had been an early Roosevelt supporter and had been given the Ambassadorship to England as a reward for his past contributions to the party. In this position, Kennedy enraged the British by his negative attitudes towards their government and his advices to Roosevelt not to support Britain militarily.

All of the State Department cables were intercepted and decoded by British intelligence and the American Embassy in London was bugged with the result that many anti-Roosevelt comments purporting to come from Kennedy were passed on to Roosevelt by Churchill.

The ambassador was eventually recalled and a number of post-war British writers have attempted to portray Kennedy as a German spy, without the smallest degree of proof.

On August 12, 1944, Joseph Kennedy Jr. was piloting a special bomber loaded with explosives. It was intended that he aim the plane at a German rocket site near the French coast and parachute out while the flying bomb continued to its target. Shortly after takeoff, the aircraft exploded in mid-air, instantly killing Kennedy and his co-pilot. The fuses on the aircraft intended to explode the explosive cargo were designed to be activated by an FM radio beam.

By coincidence, at the moment of the explosion, a British FM station, whose stated purpose was to send out false radio signals designed to disrupt incoming German V-1s, suddenly went on the air. The British later apologized for their error, stating that they were “totally unaware” of the Kennedy mission.

Neither the German V-1, or “buzz bomb”, or the V-2, used any kind of radio control to direct them to their targets. By the time of the Kennedy mission, British experts had thoroughly inspected sufficient crashed V-1s to realize this fact and were also aware that the V-2 long range rocket was set on its course at launch time. No radio interception on the part of the British or Americans would have had the slightest effect on the trajectory of either weapon and this was well known at the time.

In 1944, Joe Kennedy said to then-Senator Harry Truman at a Democratic strategy meeting in Boston, “Harry, what the hell are you doing campaigning for that crippled son-of-a-bitch that killed my son Joe?”


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